Friday, June 30, 2017


Far Guy’s God Mother Marge ( He calls her Aunt Marge) has been on our minds all Spring and now Summer.

She is fighting esophageal cancer and going through radiation.  Her kids who live many States away are taking turns caring for her. They fly in for a couple of weeks and then another flies in to take their turn.  They drive two hours to the radiation treatments and two hours back.  Marge says the treatment after she is inside the helmet and locked down takes just seconds.

We visited recently.  We all laughed and cried.  She wonders when it will all come to an end.  Far Guy said “We never know… God is in charge and when it is your time it is your time.”  Marge wonders what she could possibly do on this earth that would make a difference.  She is a Minister’s kid and her 92 year old brother is still doing vacancy preaching. Marge has a strong faith, she knows she is saved by Grace alone…she is ready.

Many years ago, Marge and her husband Orville gave us a couple of pots of a tall grass.  They said it will spread and it is impossible to kill so put it someplace where you don’t care if it takes over.  Since then we have called it Marge Grass. ( It is really a Miscanthus of some sort…not sure which one. )

All Spring the Marge Grass was struggling…as was Marge.  One day I told Far Guy “ I am worried about the Marge Grass and Marge I think it is a bad sign.”  He replied “I know…me too.”

Marge Grass June 29 2017 

Finally now in late June, the Marge Grass is coming along.  Marge completes four of her six week radiation regimen today.

Marge Grass

Here is The Marge Grass at it’s best in the Fall.

Marge never forgets our anniversary or Far Guy’s birthday, the phone rings and it is Marge.  She has graciously shared some of her husband’s family history with us. Orville’s Mother (Aunt Emma) was Far Guy’s Grandma Tracie’s sister. As a side note Orville had Trigeminal Neuralgia also and breathing problems which may or may not have been Alpha One Antitrypsin Deficiency.  Orville died back in 2005.

Marge will be 85 on her birthday in August.

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Thursday, June 29, 2017

A Lily

Here is Far Guy’s latest woodcarving project.  The whole thing took him about 100 hours.

 The pieces

The base, the wooden circle is just a temporary stamen holder, leaves and the flower.

It is carved from Basswood, I wish I had taken a photo of the chunks of wood he started with.   The chunks he started with were huge in order to get the curve of the petals.  The actual flower was done with two pieces ( three petals each) that eventually fit together, I think he worked a whole afternoon fitting the petals together so they would seem like they belonged to one flower.  He had no pattern…so he designed it and carved it by trial and error.

Carving ready to paint

He put it together….and asked me to paint it for him.

Finished carving

I worked on it one evening and one afternoon.  The base is a piece of Black Walnut.

Is it real

He picked the design and together we picked the paint colors.  He was hovering like an expectant father as I was painting….and mostly smiling!

I am pleased with it.  Far Guy is really happy with it. 

Now we are both carving on Christmas Ornaments.

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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Wistful Wednesday : Auction May 29 1993

My maternal Grandparents had an auction sale a long time ago. Grandpa was going to be 90 years old that July and was done farming.    I kept an auction bill and recently dusted off my huge scanner to scan it.

As I recall it was a reasonably nice day for an auction.  I bid on many things, mostly I bid against my Uncles so they wouldn’t get too much “stuff” cheap.

Grandma and Grandpa Drewes Auction 001 

Auction Bill

I am not sure what else I bought but I bought the copper boiler.

Copper boilerI

I suppose I should get some copper cleaner and spiff it up a bit.   It holds magazines and oversized rice bags (for cold feet), it sits inbetween the bedroom and the bathroom and yes Chance lays just outside the bathroom door…it is one of his safe places.

I have another boiler it is stainless steel and it holds extra blankets so the grands can grab one when they are here.  Not sure where or when I bought that one, maybe I bought both that day.  The boilers were always on the stove in the pump house, clothing was probably boiled in that pump house at one time, but all I recall is chickens being scalded in them during chicken butchering time.  ( For those of you who don’t know once a chicken has properly bled out, it is dunked into a hot water bath several times until the feathers are easy to pluck.)  I can still smell wet feathers just thinking of that old pump house.

I had to laugh at this Auction Bill…I thought my Grandparents drove a Buick.  It was a 1973 Buick LeSabre. (In Nice condition for a 20 year old car.  It always sat in the garage and never went over 45 or 50 mph.) Apparently no one was driving anymore…Grandpa never drove much Grandma always drove, but since they sold the car apparently she wasn’t driving either…Grandma would have been 82 that year.  Sadly they both died in 1995 within two months of each other. Grandpa was 92 and Grandma 84.

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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Wild Lupines

In some areas of Minnesota Lupine grow wild in the ditches.  We have an area about 40 miles North of us that has a patch of Wild Lupines growing in the ditch.

Lupines near Becida

Lupinus perennis

We caught them at almost peak bloom.  Lupines are native to Minnesota but are usually found over by Lake Superior and the Southern part of the state.

Lupines near becida and Yellow Hawkweed

One bunch had escaped into a clear cut area… the bits of yellow color are Hawkweed. There were some Lupines off to the left that were mainly white. (Seedling variation no doubt.)


It wamed up a bit and got to 70 F…perfect weather!

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Monday, June 26, 2017

Quiet Day

Not much was accomplished, it was a quiet cool day.

We went for a ride down to the lake.

Lake View

On the back road we noticed some Elderberry Bushes in bloom.  Soon they will be gone because the birds like them.

Red Elderberry

Red Elderberry  or Sambucus racemosa  The fruit if cooked is edible but the seeds inside the fruit are toxic as are the leaves and stems.  This is NOT the Elderberry that wine is made from those fruits are purple when ripe.

Our high yesterday was 62F or 16C eh! Not exactly summer weather but we might get to 70 F this week!

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Sunday, June 25, 2017


It is a wonderful hobby, and the guys will say that buying supplies …wood, knives, gouges and various bits to fit power carvers is just like women who quilt or sew that never have enough fabric.

Sooner or later everyone finds their niche in carving.  Mine is little bark houses and buildings.  Far Guy carves flowers.  Many of the guys carve ducks and birds.  Sheila who is very talented even carved a old fashioned doll complete with movable joints.

We had an “artist” that joined us three times, he was going to carve one of those drugstore Cigar Indians…life size….he never returned.  We had one weird guy show up and spread out all his carvings on a towel and then just sit there and stare at people, it was as if he was marking his spot.( Like male dogs mark theirs.)  People come and go within the group some are snow birds and some take the summers off.  There are about 8 of us that show up once a week…but that number can swell to 20.

This spring Far Guy designed and carved a Coneflower

Woodcarving Purple coneflower


Purple coneflower carving painted

I painted it for him it is a Purple Coneflower!

coneflower head

The flower head was covered with bits of bark that I was carving one day.  He made good use of my chips.

At the present time I am working on Christmas Ornaments, my goal is to carve and get one ready to paint every day.  Far Guy finished his newest flower that is a beauty and he has asked me to paint it for him.  I took photos and will share them after it is complete.  I would venture to guess that he has about 100 hours in his latest carving. 

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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Cool Spell

We struggled to get to 60F yesterday or 15C eh! Today and tomorrow we may not even get that warm.

How cool is it?  Cool enough to feel guilty that some people are suffering in the heat.  Cool enough for comfort food, I hardly ever fix a roast with potatoes and gravy in the summer…baked carrots too.   Cool enough that Far Guy retreated to the woodshop/greenhouse to carve.  I carved outside on the patio…my goal is to carve one Christmas ornament a was chilly but I had a coat on.  The house was toasty warm and smelling good from the roast in the oven when I came back inside.

This is May weather not June.  It hardly seems fair, this should be sit outside in the evening weather and enjoy the long daylight hours…not many bugs yet…

My peony

My Peony finally bloomed.

Heads so heavy

My light pink one is a napping variety.  The heads are so heavy they bend over and bloom. What… never heard of a napping variety…ever been so sleepy it is hard to hold your big old head up?

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Friday, June 23, 2017

Hey Mikey : 4 weeks old

We traveled North to see Mikey one afternoon last week.  He is four weeks old today, according to his sweet Mama he eats, sleeps, poops, pees and keeps her busy.  He weighs about ten pounds now.  He is almost out of newborn clothing and into the 0-3 months size.  Maddies says she thinks his legs are scrunched in the newborn size.

Hey Mikey

Hey Mikey you are 26 days old!

Far Guy and I both held him…he was a little fussy.  I put some socks on him and wrapped him up in a warm fuzzy blanket, he had the last ounce of a bottle, I was rewarded with a huge burp and he fell asleep.  In his sleep he smiled, but of course I didn’t get that on camera.

It has been my experience over the years that a warm baby is a happy sleepy baby.  With Jennifer I warmed her bassinet with a heating pad before I put her down to sleep. I often used those old fashioned kimonos that had flaps on the sleeve so that you could cover up their fingers. Socks were a must.  I know it is summer but babies just have a hard time regulating their body temperature if they are warm they stay warm but if they are cold they stay cold and cranky.

Mikey 26 days old

Looking at his Great Grandpa!

Mikey asleep

Asleep courtesy of Great Grandma.

What fun to snuggle with this tiny baby boy.  Such a precious gift from God.

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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Hello Summer

Summer is finally officially here.  My husband says he wants a “do over” for June because the days are going so fast.

Blue Flag Iris June 20 2017

On one of our evening drives we found a wonderful patch of Blug Flag Iris blooming.

near the stream

Iris versicolor a Native to Minnesota plant.  I took this one near another patch on the banks of the Shell River, the water makes a beautiful backdrop.

Iris near the stream

Such a pretty flower!

I think I would like a do over too, there are way too many Wild Flowers to photograph in June!

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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Wistful Wednesday: Generations

A long time ago…well 65 plus years ago I had a photograph taken.

Four Generations 1951

I am the baby along with my Mom, my maternal Grandfather and my Great Grandmother photo taken in 1952.

1972 Four generations Elsie Madeline Trica Connie

Then in 1972 another photo was taken.  My maternal Grandmother, my Mother holding Trica and me.


In 1996 Savannah was born.  Me, Trica with Savannah and my Mother.  This is a unique photo because it is of all the oldest daughters.  My Grandmother died in October of 1995 and Savannah was born in July of 1996.  So my Grandma just missed seeing her first Great  Great Grandchild by nine months.

Four generations Me, Trica, Savannah and Maddie and Madeline 1998

In 1998 we took another photo this time when Maddie was born. Me, Trica, Savannah, Maddie and my Mother.

Now it is 2017 and it was time for a five generations photo.

five Generations

Maddie, Me, Trica and My Mother in front holding Mikey.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Rude Awakening

I was sound asleep at 6AM.  Some people may be up by then but I am so not a morning person.

I heard  some sounds…something was hitting the window in the kitchen. It was a rhythmic noise kinda like a pop pop…pop pop.   I grabbed the camera.


Just another Wild Turkey in love with his reflection or else looking for bugs on the window….who really knows for sure.


This particular Wild Turkey had awakened me from a nap one day last week.  He is wandering around in our woods, I think he is a young male turkey.


He did not like me taking his photograph.  So he sauntered off.

Such is life in the woods.

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Monday, June 19, 2017

Showy Lady’s Slippers

Just like clockwork the Minnesota State Flower appears near Father’s Day every June.

Lots of slippers

They are beautiful! I look forward to seeing them in bloom every June.

In bud

There are many buds, and the weather has turned rainy and cool so we may have a longer Lady Slipper season than normal.

turned to the side with a flying escort

Some seem as if they are marching along with an escort.

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Sunday, June 18, 2017

Rain and Father’s Day

It waited until Saturday evening to rain.
Chance behind the roses
It has cooled off. It was 72 F Saturday or 22 C eh, perfect Minnesota in June weather. We are supposed to have a cool week highs in the 60’s during the day.
Raindrops on roses
Raindrops on Wild Roses
Happy Father’s Day to my Dad and to my husband! We took my Mom and Dad to lunch one day last week we have a place we like to go out in the boonies for a burger!  It usually isn’t real busy in mid afternoon and not many perfumy people are there. Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads out there!
My Dad May 2017
Great Great Grandparents
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